This is the third year in a row Ben Seran, has participated in scholastic chess tournaments. Before that he wasn’t old enough! In kindergarten, he placed 10th in the WA State Elementary Chess Tournament. Last year, he came in 7th for first graders. This year, as an eight year old, he has participated in seven tournaments, more than ever before. This is an accomplishment, because most tournaments are held in Seattle, and some players compete every weekend.
How does a kid growing up in Nordland, WA get so good? He plays, everyday. Just like practicing an instrument. He’ll play anyone, he’s not afraid to lose. But mostly, he wins. His participation in the First Annual Port Townsend Open Chess Tournament has been a lot of fun. Seran has discovered a lot more people on the Peninsula who like to play chess. Right before the sixth round he is neck and neck for third place. He also plays online and has chess ‘buddies’ from all over the world.
The first week in April will find Seran playing chess against kids from all over the country at the SuperNationals Chess Tournament in Nashville TN. It’s called SuperNationals because every four years they combine the elementary, the junior, and the senior high school national tournaments. There will be thousands of chess players grades K-12. “It’s very exciting, even Gary Kasparov will be there!”, said Ben about Nationals.
Ben will be stationed at several stores over the next few weeks to help raise money for the trip. “He brought it up, and I thought it was a great idea” says his dad, Grant Seran.